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Mainframes: The Next 60 Years

By | April 7, 2024

On April 7, 1964, the number one song on the UK and American music charts was Can’t Buy Me Love by the Beatles. A baby was born in Wellington, New Zealand – his family would eventually move to Australia, where he would launch a music career under the name Russ Le Roq before turning to acting under his birth name, Russell Crowe. And IBM unveiled the revolutionary System/360 – the first mainframe – which would prove to be the most significant computer ever produced. Sixty years later, the Beatles remain one of the most popular bands in the world, Russell Crowe is still a major Hollywood draw, and the descendants of the IBM System/360 continue to blaze new trails in speed, reliability, security, and power. 

It is almost unheard of for a technology to remain relevant for more than a few years, and the continuing dominance of mainframes is unprecedented. And as powerful as they are today, they are poised to dominate the technology landscape for decades to come. One of the major reasons for this longevity is that mainframes are built with an open-source mindset that makes them flexible and adaptable for users. 

The Open Mainframe Project, which serves as a focal point for deployment and use of Linux and Open Source in a mainframe computing environment, is celebrating the first six decades of the mainframe by looking ahead at the next 60 years. As part of this, we sat down with leading mainframe experts to get their perspectives on why the mainframe remains dominant today…and why it will continue to blaze trails in the years and decades to come. We invite you to download a new report that highlights why we are so optimistic about the mainframe and what industry leaders are saying about its future. 

We would like to thank all of the busy professionals who took time to share their thoughts, and we’d also like to acknowledge our friends at marketing agency VerbFactory for writing and designing the document. It was truly a team effort! 

We can’t wait for the next 60 years!